ONE IN 10 SCOTS ON HAPPY PILLS; Prescriptions leap by 200% in 15 years.
NEARLY one in 10 Scots are on antidepressants, the NHS revealed yesterday.
The country's annual bill for the drugs was more than pounds 40million last year, despite a fall in costs.
The number of anti-depressants prescribed has more than tripled in the last 15 years, prompting claims Scotland is becoming a "Prozac nation".
NHS Scotland statistics revealed prescriptions had grown from 1.16 million items to 3.83million between 1992/93 and 2007/08.
An estimated 9.3 per cent of Scots over the age of 15 use an anti-depressant every day.
Lib Dem public health spokesman Jamie Stone said these high numbers were "cause for serious concern".
He said: "The health secretary must ensure that anti-depressants are not allowed to become a quick fix for depression.
"I hope that these figures prompt health professionals to look at viable alternatives to anti-depressants.
"We should be trying to help people through the rough periods in their lives without relying on tablets.
"We must not allow Scotland to turn into a Prozac nation."
The cost of anti-depressant medicines in 2007/08 was pounds 40.4million, down from pounds 43.7million in the previous financial year.
But that decrease has been attributed to a number of drugs coming down in price.
The prescribing of most classes of anti-depressants increased, although the older generation "monoamine oxidase inhibitors" went down.
Newer "selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors" - including Prozac - rose by 5.6 per cent in the last year.
And 12.3 per cent more attention deficit hyperactivity disorder drugs were doled out.
RELIEF: Prozac is a top anti-depressant
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|Publication:||Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)|
|Date:||Dec 17, 2008|
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